13 Top Jobs for Former Teachers
What jobs for former teachers are out there? Many teachers find themselves suffering from burn out or unhappy in their career choice.
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“Now what do I do?”
When this happens, teachers can often find themselves feeling lost and aimless without a clear path on how to transition into something else. Afterall, it’s hard coming to grips that your career choice in life isn’t exactly going how you dreamed it would. Thankfully, if traditional teaching is no longer in your plans, there are plenty of opportunities where your teaching skills can translate into another career. Here are just a few ideas on how to transition from teaching with confidence.
Corporate trainers are responsible for the continuing education of a company’s employees and a great job for former teachers. You’ll be responsible for teaching employees’ new skills, techniques, and procedures. Building lessons for clients and teaching employees, you’ll focus on the company’s goals and big projects. As a corporate trainer, you’ll need to be able to create and give presentations using digital media, work with teams and individuals to identify problems and solutions, and efficiency and organizational skills. A few companies that look for Corporate Trainers include Amazon, McDonalds, and Verizon.
An education consultant combines their teaching skills with their administrative skills to provide qualitative advice on school policies and procedures. Education consultants can also serve as advisors on textbook projects, government agencies, non-profit think tanks and so on. You can even get additional certifications through the Independent Educational Consultants Association (IECA) or the American Institute for Certified Educational Planners. If you have good analytical skills, great at organizing and planning, and have a background in curriculum building, then this is the right career move for you. Companies that need Education Consultants include College Ready, Rosetta Stone and Curriculum Associates.
Textbook Sales Representative
Textbook Sales Representatives are responsible for identifying sales and closing deals between textbook companies and schools. Other responsibilities include making campus visits for sales demonstrations, answering client questions about logistics and the textbook itself, and making sales calls. For teachers with an affinity for sales, a position selling textbooks can help you take your passion for quality education beyond your own classroom and into hundreds more.
Want to give sales a go? Here are some courses I recommend to help you get started:
Textbook representatives need to understand how textbooks are utilized in the classroom and have a stellar sales pitch that conveniently points towards all the textbook sections teachers (This is essential to closing deals), experience or aptitude working in sales positions, and the ability to give sales presentations and communicate effectively. Companies That Hire Textbook Sales Representatives: Pearson, McGraw-Hill and Discovery Education.
Museum Education Director
If you’re the type of teacher that finds an excuse to visit a museum for every field trip, consider transitioning to the museum education field. Museum Education Directors are tasked with making sure that visitors to the museum are engaged in learning experiences that relate to the museum’s collection. For those with a passion for storytelling and connecting with the curious of any age, this position can be a wonderful use of your teaching skills. One of the many reasons why museum positions are perfect jobs for former teachers.
Here’s a tip! There are a wide variety of other educational positions within museums that may interest former teachers, including specialist positions and program directors. If you’d like your job searches to include these positions, your search term should be ‘museum educator.’
To be a Museum Education Director, you’ll need a bachelor’s degree and experience in education or similar fields. Certain museums may require degrees related to their collection. You’ll also need experience in directing and leading engaging presentations and the ability to create programs, activities, and learning materials with guidance. Companies that hire Museum Education Directors include Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco, Stanford University, and Natural History Museums.
Your expertise of running a red pen through essay after essay can help you. Consider a transition to the world of professional copy editing. The basics of being an editor are simple; you’ll read content and edit it with a sharp eye for clarity, conciseness, and evocativeness. There are a variety of different ways you can find employment as an editor. Start with traditional positions with newspapers or magazines to freelance positions from the comfort of your coffee table.
Many positions prefer a bachelor’s degree in English, journalism, or communications. Editors need a strong understanding of the writing process, including editing and revision, the ability to evaluate story pitches, and develop your own ideas in relation to your audience. Companies that hire editors include The New York Times, NBCUniversal, and Thomson Reuters.
Education Product Supplier
Teachers with an eye for the perfect product to accompany an important lesson should consider taking their talents with them to become an education product supplier. Between books, lesson kits, and learning tools, there are a variety of products with an impact on a child’s education. In other words, education product suppliers help teachers, parents, and education leaders see the benefits of their product in the classroom and beyond.
Education Product Suppliers need to have the ability to utilize technology for product promotion and client communication; experience organizing schedules, calls, and meetings; and aptitude in identifying the needs and wants of educators in relation to sales goals. Companies that hire Education Product Suppliers include School Specialty, Pearson and Teacher Created Materials.
Everyone and their Grandma have niche-based blogs these days, and it’s for a good reason. An established blog in a popular area of interest (aka niche) can generate thousands of dollars a month in reliable income. As a result, many teachers are naturally drawn to blogging. Successful blogs—at their core—are built to educate and innovate. Good bloggers need determination and an entrepreneurial mindset.
This includes adhering to your own schedule, content ideas and workload; delegation skills to develop a blog that earns a full-time income; and a knack for writing blog posts that connect with your niche’s audience. You’ll also need to research affiliate marketing to find ways to monetize your blog.
Bonus Tips for Bloggers: Teachers have a treasure trove of potential niches to explore. Popular niches include children’s arts and crafts, classroom resources, early childhood resources, and study resources for high school students. Keep in mind that it’s completely fine to forgo your background as a teacher. You can blog about anything, even the price comparisons of vintage PEZ dispensers. There are many ways to monetize a blog. The two main income sources most bloggers receive can be placed into two basic categories: Selling your own products or services, an example is an e-course or workbook; or selling someone else’s products or services. An example is running ads or use affiliate links.
Educational Toy Companies
Employment at an educational toy company can mean a variety of things: you could be a salesperson who travels throughout the educational system showing off the benefits of your toy, an educational toy designer, or an educational consultant who helps drive the company’s main mission. Each one of these positions allows you to take your passion for teaching to work each day—and play with it.
To work for an educational toy company, you’ll probably need to have a knack for conveying education and learning concepts through play toys, Experience or aptitude working as a member of an innovative team, and the readiness to use digital media and social media to connect with educators and parents. Companies that make educational toys include Hasbro, Learning Resources, Leap Frog and Mattel.
HR Learning & Development Specialist
A career in HR Learning & Development is perfect for those who have a passion for creating and implementing courses, a great job for former teachers. These professionals spend the majority of their time planning, creating, and improving training courses designed to help new employees transition smoothly into their roles. Love analyzing your own lesson plans for content gaps? This career will make good use of your skills.
HR Learning & Development Specialists need the ability to create course material and accompanying training instructions, proficiency in using digital media and communications and insight into how trainee feedback can be used to improve training materials. Companies that hire HR Learning % Development Specialists include the U.S. Departments of Veterans Affairs, Marriott International and California State University.
While the teaching profession is already a noble endeavor, you can add more purpose points on your do-good ledger by taking your talents to the non-profit sector. A passion for helping others can help teachers make the transition to a number of positions within non-profit organizations. Non-profits require many different types of positions to operate properly, and common examples include management positions, accounting, digital media, and communications.
As a Non-Profit Professional you’ll need the willingness to work as a team member with a small part to play in a bigger mission, critical thinking and problem-solving skills, and deep understanding of how digital media and communication drive engagement. Notable Non-Profit Organizations include American Red Cross, Human Rights Watch and Feeding America.
The gig economy revolution is all the rage right now and for the more entrepreneurial-minded individuals out there, this on-demand option could be perfect for you. More people are trading in the 40-hour 9-to-5 for flexible schedules and control over their income. Instead of teaching a classroom of 30 students, you can choose who and when you want to teach, often on a one-on-basis.
In the digital age, it’s even easier to market your small business and to spread the word that you are a teacher for hire. Websites such as Care.com and Tutors.com can help you find steady work, and your own social media network can often be a valuable resource as well.
It’s no secret that the internet has altered everything we do. From banking, shopping, dating and even teaching, technology affords us opportunities never dreamed of in previous generations, and teaching is no exception. Often referred to as remote, distance or virtual teaching, online instructors can teach at every level of education, from kindergarten through high school, as well as college and continuing education courses.
This personal approach to teaching is a great opportunity to reach students and teachers who don’t necessarily fit into the traditional brick-and-mortar school house. The skills you’ll need for teaching online you more than likely already have but brushing up on the latest in online technology will definitely help. Companies that need online teachers include K12, Waterford, and Edmentum.
Curriculum Writers are tasked with researching and developing lessons, including materials and activities. Your work will contribute to the structure or educational and instructional programs for lower, middle and higher education. A career in curriculum design can easily translate into various opportunities outside of the classroom, including companies, organizations, and government agencies. If you have a knack for writing outlines and technical writing, as well as supreme time management and organizational skills, then you may be able to easily transition into curriculum writing. Companies looking for Curriculum Writers include Catapult Learning, Great Minds, and Elevate K-12.
About The Teacher Career Coach
I hope this post has helped you understand my mission. My goal is to help bring clarity to any teachers who are suffering from the pain I experienced during my own career transition of leaving teaching.
If you are beginning to weigh your options, my free newsletter is a great place to get started. I’ll send you resources about career transitions, strategies to help prevent burnout, and ways to make extra $$ while you’re still in the classroom.
If you have been waiting for a step-by-step guide to help you leave the classroom, sign up for The Teacher Career Coach Course. I’ve spent countless hours building this resource with the consultation of an HR professional with 10+ years in experience and over 1,000 teachers’ most commonly asked questions.